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Opening and Closing Questions

Common questions can be used to break the ice during the first few minutes of an interview or to end the interview. General questions also can be used for most positions.


  • What do you know about our company?
  • Tell me why you chose [name of career] as your profession.
  • What do you like most about the [name of profession]? What do you like least, and what do you find the most challenging?
  • Tell us a bit about your work background, and then give us a description of how you think it relates to our current opening.
  • What are your qualifications in your area of expertise, that is, what skills do you have that make you the best candidate for this position? Include any special training you have had (such as on-the-job, college, continuing education, seminars, reading) and related work experience.
  • Why have you applied for this position?
  • What skill sets do you think you would bring to this position?
  • Tell me about your present or last job. Why did you choose it? Why did you, or why do you, want to leave?
  • What was your primary contribution or achievement in your last or current position? Biggest challenge?
  • What are your short- and long-term career goals?
  • What are some positive aspects of your last employment or employer? What are some negative aspects?
  • After learning about this opportunity, what made you take the next step and apply for the job?
  • What would you have liked to do more of in your last position? What held you back?
  • Would you please describe your interest in becoming [title of position].
  • Tell me about your normal experiences during a typical day in your current position.
  • In your current job, what is your usual schedule? How many hours do you work, and when do you work them?
  • What sizes of organizations have you worked in?
  • What industries have you worked in?
  • What qualities and skills do you think a successful [name of career] professional should have? Which of these qualities and skills you named do you have?
  • Tell me about two work accomplishments that were very successful or you are the most proud of.
  • What college courses or experience have prepared you for the position you are applying for with us?
  • What three things are most important to you in a position?
  • What was the best job you ever had? What was the worst? Why?
  • What do you think makes a “good” organization? What makes a company be described as “one of the best businesses” or “best places to work” by a community?
  • Describe the ideal job from your perspective.
  • Describe what you would say if asked to talk about yourself in a group of 15 work colleagues.
  • What’s the best book you’ve read in the last year? Please take a minute and tell us what you liked about it.
  • What is your interpretation of “success”?
  • Describe an ideal work environment or “the perfect job.”


  • Describe what you see as your strengths related to this job or position. Describe what you see as your weaknesses related to this job or position.
  • If we offer you this position, what contributions would you expect to make during the first three months on the job?
  • Why should we hire you?
  • If the position required it, would you be willing to travel?
  • If the position required it, would you be willing to relocate?
  • If you were offered this position, when would you be available to start?
  • If you are the successful applicant, how would you expect to be different after a year in this position?
  • Now that you have learned about our company and the position you are applying for, what hesitation or reluctance would you have in accepting this job if we offered it to you?
  • Tell me anything else you would like us to know about you that will aid us in making our decision.
  • What questions would you like to ask me?
  • Have you heard of any programs, policies or actions of [Company Name] that concern you?
  • How will your work performance enhance [Company Name] in this industry as it is today?​


​An organization run by AI is not a futuristic concept. Such technology is already a part of many workplaces and will continue to shape the labor market and HR. Here's how employers and employees can successfully manage generative AI and other AI-powered systems.